At Aflete as well as bringing you fantastic interviews and features by our writing staff we are picking out the best food, health and fitness articles from across the web and bringing them here for you! There is so much information out there how to train fast to achieve your dream body. We all get lost on how to train to be fitter and what to do, finding the right balance. We are lucky to have opportunity to find these amazing secrets from a professional trainer Scott Laidler who knows of getting fitter faster as broken down in sections how to balance your workouts so you can incorporate into your own fitness regime.
Enjoy the 25 golden rules of fitness tips below
1. Log Your Workouts
Tracking your workout is essential. It’s the only way you can truly judge if you are making progress. Plus, if you ever find yourself out of shape, you can check back with the training you were doing at the time and repeat it to regain the conditioning.
2. Mobility Drills
Exercise isn’t all about aesthetics, we also have to look after our body and ensure that our muscles and joints work fluently through a full range of movement. Daily mobility drills like stretches can help keep your body working as it was intended to. This one gets more and more important with every passing year.
3. Intermittent Fasting
Skipping breakfast could be the best move you ever make. Intermittent fasting can keep your body’s natural growth hormone active for longer, offset the ageing process and help keep you lean. Just make sure you’ve read up on the topic before you start.
4. Eat accordingly
We all know there are recommended daily allowances for things like calories, but it’s easy to forget that our actual lives fluctuate rapidly from day to day. We rarely expend exactly the same amount of energy two days in a row, so it stands to reason that we should approach food intake on a day-by-day basis. If you exercise a great deal on Monday and do nothing but chill out and relax on Tuesday, you’re going to need more fuel on the Monday than the Tuesday.
5. Ice Baths
Taking an ice bath or hitting a plunge pool after a heavy training session can significantly speed up the recovery process. It squeezes the blood out of your muscles whist you’re in the water, meaning that when you get out your hit by a flood of brand new oxygen-rich blood. It’s agony, but it’s worth it!
Exercise is all about progressive overload, so don’t get caught up in a rut doing the same workout over and over again with no forward momentum. People who aim to ‘maintain’ often end up going backwards. Do more each time you work out – even one extra rep over an entire session is enough to represent progression.
7. Learn how to time your workouts
You have to be able to predict when you’ll get the most out of your training sessions. It’s an individual thing: you may find that you just don’t have the same output in the evening as you do in the morning, or vice versa. Experiment with different training times and find what works for you.
8. Use BCAA To Preserve Muscle
I don’t recommend many supplements, but there’s one that helps to protect your hard earned muscle that seems like a no-brainer to me. I take BCAA in the mornings (due to intermittent fasting) as well as pre and post workout to prevent catabolism. Its such a small price to pay for what I like to call ‘muscle insurance’
9. Train Your Legs
Don’t be the ‘every day is upper body day’ guy. So many men make the mistake of never training their lower body and end up with an unbalanced physique, both aesthetically and functionally. Training your legs properly will raise your testosterone and growth hormone production and actually make your whole body more anabolic. Get it done!
10. Train Your Glutes
OK, so you read the point above and started training your legs right? But are you really training your whole leg? Do you realise how important your glutes are to your athletic performance, not to mention how attractive they are to the opposite sex? Ladies like a pert, toned bottom just as much as men do. Hit your glutes hard and regular. Use weighted lunges, deadlifts and hip extensions to develop the perfect man butt.
11. Train You Calves
So you read the point above and started training glutes right? But what about your calves? I know I’m annoying but I have to say my piece. Nobody likes calf training, because, well, it hurts. There are so many nerves down there that genuine calf training if pretty painful- but when all is said and done, that’s no excuse to leave them off your agenda. Weighted calf raises once a week should be enough to bring them up. People notice calves, believe me!
12. Talk To Experts
Guess work is the worst thing you can do in the gym: it leads to poor results, and a lot of wasted time and money. If there’s a question you don’t know the answer to, just ask a pro. You don’t have to sign up with a personal trainer, just ask one in the gym or via email. Most love what they do and are pretty happy to help.
13. Get Your Mind Right
I once read a study that up to 13pc of gains from a workout can be the result of simply performing it mentally. On reflection, I’ve completed a training phase with no thought to my goals and progress and seen literally a fraction of the results from the same training as when I am focused and thinking about what I’m trying to achieve. Get your mind in the game. Know your outcome for every workout and what your overall fitness goal is; your brain is more powerful than you think.
14. Avoid Crash Diets
Unless you have been at your ideal weight for some time and regularly eat balanced, healthy meals, you really have no business at all doing any kind of diet. And even then it would be to achieve an advanced goal like competing in an event or doing a photo shoot. Crash diets tend only to lead to a loss of muscle and are, by definition, temporary. Avoid diets at all costs and just focus on the basics of healthy eating.
15. Drop Your Ego
Nobody cares how much weight you lift. Nobody is watching and nobody is tracking. What does draw attention is terrible lifting technique. Lifting well beyond what you can handle just to look good in front of other people is pretty much the same as tattooing “I’m insecure about my strength” on your forehead. If you can’t bench, squat, deadlift and curl with immaculate technique, it may be time to drop down a weight, develop authentic strength and come back to lift heavier another day. If it really is respect you’re after, that’ll be how you earn it.
16. Get Outside
You don’t have to be cooped up in the gym for every workout. There are plenty of opportunities to get outside and train in the fresh air. Sprints, circuits and TRX workouts all provide a great opportunity to head to your local park and enjoy the fresh air.
17. Have A Mantra
When times get tough in the gym and you just don’t feel like you have the will to train, you need yourself a mantra to get your through. Personally I use “You Never Know Your Limits Until You Push Through Them”. What will yours be?
18. Dress To Impress
Dressing well in the gym can make a big difference to how you feel. Feeling good in your gym kit adds motivation and makes you feel that all the effort you are putting in is worthwhile. You can also use it as an intrinsic motivator: if you only have tight fitting gym wear its pretty clear for all to see when you aren’t in shape, so you won’t stay there long. Apparently this was a favourite trick of a certain Arnold Schwarzenegger.
19. Don’t Look For Shortcuts
I’m not going to philosophise about whether performance enhancers like steroids and potent thermogenics are inherently right or wrong. What I will say is that neither should even be considered without truly earning your right to say that you have reached your natural potential the old fashioned way. If you are hoping to find the perfect physique in the bottom of a pill box, you are setting yourself up for a lot of disappointment.
20. Train In Phases
Your body gets used to the same exercise stimulus after about four to six weeks, grinding your progress to a halt. Switch stimulus by training in six week phases. For example, this could mean switching from a hypertrophy phase to a muscular endurance phase followed by a fat-loss phase. Plan your training 24 weeks in advance and always switch up to a new phase after six weeks. This is how athletes and bodybuilders train. Success leaves clues; follow what the pros do and you won’t go far wrong.
21. Get Over Setbacks Quickly
We all experience setbacks in life. Health and fitness is no different. The most common exercise setbacks are typically injury and illness. When you get struck down, rest up, recover, and when you feel like you can train again, return with vigour. Never get down in the dumps about a setback. Yes it’s frustrating, but time is going to pass anyway so the sooner you get back on the horse the better.
22. Oil The Machine
Exercise takes its toll on your muscles, joints and tendons so be sure to take steps to repair the damage. These might include using a foam roller, getting a sports massage, using cold showers and saunas for hot and cold therapy and just making sure you get enough sleep.
23. Basic Supplementation
There is a lot of debate as to whether supplements are worth the money we pay for them, or if they even work. The way I see it, the cost to benefit ratio is just too highly stacked in our favour to ignore. Because of modern transportation and supermarket logistics, by the time our food reaches us it often no longer contains the full spectrum of vitamins and minerals that nature intended. To account for this I recommend that everyone take a multivitamin and a multi-mineral supplement. At such a low cost, why would you not want to take your shot at optimal health?
24. Cultivate Your Environment
Making progress isn’t just about what you do in the gym. It’s just as important to cultivate a living environment conducive to your fitness goals. Aim to create a system for healthy food delivery, make your supplements easy to reach for those early morning training sessions and make sure you have enough training kit on constant rotation. There’s no worse excuse for not training than having no clean kit!
25. It’s You vs You
Never be disheartened by the progress or condition of others. Everyone has their own genetic make-up, their own goals and their own demons. All you need to concentrate on is being better than you were yesterday.
Original article by Scott Laidler for the Telegraph.
There we have it, the ’25 golden rules of fitness’ – How many do you already follow?